Airlines have come under scrutiny for losing 42 million bags worldwide in 2007.
In 2007 1.2 million bags were never found, meaning one in 2,000 travellers never saw their luggage again.
As well as urging airlines to take more care over passengers’ luggage, the AUC is also calling on airlines to properly recompense passengers who do suffer from lost luggage, either temporarily or permanently.
AUC chairman Tina Tietjen said: “Airlines primary duty to passengers should be to put in place systems that will mean they mishandle as few bags as possible.
“But if something goes wrong then they should also be prepared to compensate their passengers fairly. Complaints to the AUC show that passengers often struggle to get reasonable redress from airlines after the event.”
She added the Montreal Convention, which came into force in 2004 and seeks to clarify airlines’ liabilities for its passengers and baggage, has made little change to the settlements sought by passengers who have lost their bags.
Tietjen said on too many occasions passengers are not fairly compensated for their lost luggage as airlines either demand receipts for the items in the lost bag or because they are taking into account the depreciation of the value of those items.
Meanwhile passengers whose baggage is delayed after being lost are also left out of pocket as airlines refuse to fully refund them for the essential items they had to buy as they waited for their bags to resurface.
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